“Art for me is a journey influenced by the relationship between nature and the cause and effect that it has on the human spirit. My practice questions the very essence of life on earth and how we can evolve as species by remembering the profound knowledge of the ancient ways.”
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your creative journey to get to where you are now.
I was the kid who drew, I was the teenager who scribbled all over her school books and I am the adult who makes art. I was never a good drawer technically and I was told this many times through out my life, which has taught me to have thick skin and learn that critique is all part of it. I have had to work really hard to develop my eye and to be able to paint the world around me; I challenge myself constantly to step outside of my comfort zone.
All I have ever wanted to do is make art and that is what I have done. It is a life that I am committed to and like all great artists you hang onto your hat as you step onto the roller coaster ride. Motherhood and art has been the only thing that has been difficult to navigate through the bursts of inspiration, as there is no linear timeline with that stuff!
You practise a really interesting mix of visual arts and healing arts- being a multidisciplinary artist, designer, sound healer and dj. How do you perceive the relationship between the arts and healing and how one feeds into the other?
I have always made art and been aware of my ability in the healing arts from an early age. The two always work together side-by-side, which has been challenging at times to create a fine balance. I have tried to keep them separate, however as I get older I realise that they both are a direct communication with source energy and I need not be self-conscious about that.
Being the daughter of a father who is a well known dj, I learnt from the best about music and djing; from a young age I was exposed to incredible sounds and I am eternally grateful for that education.
Sound Therapy was a natural progression for me as music has always connected me to the rhythm of life and taught me about the effect that audible sound has on the human body. The relationship between art and sound is delicate and I have a deep respect for this gift. I am kind to myself and accept the organic nature of channelling and birthing creations. It is a spiritual process for me and it is only a problem when my head gets in the way.
I'm a big fan of your mask series in particular- they've got such a strong totemic aesthetic and intriguing presence. What's the story behind them?
I5 years ago I lived in an amazing old house that had a huge tree in the garden that would make these offerings to me. I started painting faces on them- not really sure at the time the power these medicine masks would have on my life. The mask throughout history has been used as a vehicle to express aspects of shadow self and experience a power that is bigger than this dimension. Most gods/ goddesses are personifications of the energy on earth and it is through this myth and wonder that we can have a heightened experience of natural phenomena. These masks are archetypal and totemic portals into the imagination of the human psyche.
What are you inspired by- who and what are your muses and why?
I am inspired by artists that challenge themselves stylistically.
I am inspired by human consciousness; the history of emotion; sexuality; health; nature and the greatest creation ever which is life and my loved ones.
What advice would you give to other creatives who want to explore their own expression but are still uncovering their voice or flavour?
My advice for all creatives is this:
+ You can have a natural creative talent, but without discipline you ain’t shit!
+ Creativity is 50% source energy and 50% you (the conduit).
+ People who buy your art are interested in you and the emotional connection they feel with your work.
+ Most often the artwork that I am unsure about is a best seller.
+ If you don’t create something on the regular it has the power to turn inward and cause havoc in your life. Humans NEED to create and express themselves to live a healthy existence.
Bonnita Gillard is an artist, researcher, writer and practitioner. Inspired by the human condition, has lead to years of research and training in various modalities from Art Therapy, Transpersonal Counselling, Sound Therapy and Nutrition. Bonnita is passionate about awakening the human spirit through the art of sound and her skill as a Sound Therapist enables her to deliver a unique, potent healing experience and provide a life changing platform, allowing clients to transcend personal barriers and become visionaries of their own lives.
Her works are showing as part of a pop-up group exhibition opening on Thursday 8th of December at Micky's Art in Richmond, Melbourne. Head to Bonnita's facebook page here for more info on this and an upcoming solo show opening January 21st, 2017 at The Nook Gallery, Mornington, VIC.
Check out more of Bonnita's artworks and sound therapy services at:
+ + THE MUSE SPOKE is a mini-interview series with inspiring humans that embody soulful creative self-expression. + +